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Gujarat Riots 2002 Case: Supreme Court Grants Bail To Teesta Setalvad, Calls Gujarat HC Observations 'Perverse', 'Contradictory'

The Supreme Court has granted bail to activist Teesta Setalvad in a case of alleged fabrication of evidence in relation to the 2002 Gujarat Riots. The activist is accused of fabricating documents to implicate functionaries of then Gujarat government led by erstwhile Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

Social activist Teesta Setalvad
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The Supreme Court has granted bail to activist Teesta Setalvad in a case of alleged fabrication of evidence in relation to the 2002 Gujarat Riots. The activist is accused of fabricating documents to implicate functionaries of the then Gujarat government led by erstwhile Chief Minister Narendra Modi. The top court observed that the Gujarat High court order denying her bail are "perverse" and "contradictory".

A Bench comprising Justices BR Gavai, AS Bopanna and Dipankar Datta quashed the Gujarat High Court order, noting that the custodial interrogation of the petitioner is not necessary since chargesheet in the case has already been filed.  The Gujarat High Court had earlier rejected Setalvad's plea for regular bail and asked her to "immediately surrender" as she is out of jail after having secured interim bail from the apex court in September last year. Soon after, the activist moved the Supreme Court which extended her protection until July 19.

The journalist and Mumbai-based activist was taken into custody on June 25, 2022, just a day after the Supreme Court junked a plea filed against the clean chit given to the then Chief Minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi and 63 others over allegations of involvement and complaceny in the riots.

Teesta Setalvad, retired Director General of Police R B Sreekumar and former IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt have been charged under sections 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 194 (giving or fabricating false evidence with intent to procure conviction for capital offence) and 218 (public servant framing incorrect record or writing with intent to save person from punishment or property from forfeiture) of the IPC, among other provisions.

This is a developing story. More details are awaited.

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